Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Knicks Sleepwalk Through Loss To Warriors in Disappointing Fashion
Without Carmelo Anthony nor Amar'e Stoudemire healthy enough to hit the hardwood for them, the Knicks still managed to win their fair share of ball games last week, despite not exactly having sufficient go-to options on offense.
J.R. Smith may represent a dominant scorer or sorts, but the fact remained that the Knicks would have to rely upon a more balanced effort if they truly wanted to pour in the points.
Unfortunately for New York, the offense didn't look any less stagnant with Anthony taking the court for the first time in three games.
The star forward failed to find his rhythm on offense. Not only did he finish with a frustrating 4 for 15 shooting performance, but the shots he did take appeared to be far from the team's offensive flow. To be fair, the same could've been said for just about any of his teammates, because frankly, there was no offensive flow present to begin with.
But even so, it can't be said that Anthony looked anywhere close to his normal self at all. In addition to being a few (hundred) steps behind offensively, he proceeded to hobble and jog gingerly around the court throughout the contest. Playing 34 minutes, the star looked pushed to his utmost limits, even wincing in frustration, pain, and strain often after he was forced to endure some type of substantial contact.
This may not have been the most opportune time for Anthony to return, but with his highly anticipated return to Denver (the first appearance he'll make in nearly two years) just days away, perhaps a tune-up was necessary for a game he just can't afford to miss. That said, it may be worth re-evaluating his progress in the next few days following the game against the Nuggets. If need be, resting him further may not be the worst of ideas when reconsidering the Knicks' postseason aspirations.
Of course, despite Anthony's struggles in Golden State, it's not as though he received any support and/or pick-me-up from his teammates. The Knicks struggled all night long to score the basketball, only shooting 27% from the field. Often two of the more common barometers for the team's success, Tyson Chandler only managed to take two shots all game long, and Steve Novak missed all six of his attempts from the field.
Aside from Anthony and Novak, Smith also shot a rather disappointing 3 of 11 from the field. Though his performance may not have been much help, the Knicks have been known to overcome a poor performance or two from him in the past. There was no one player to blame for this loss. The squad's overall ball movement fell stagnant. Thus, there was very little spacing to be had, making it extremely difficult for anyone to find a bit of offensive success to be easy to come by.
And then there was Stephen Curry. After nearly carrying his team single-handedly to victory at The Garden just a couple weeks ago, the Warriors guard followed up his 54 point performance with another scorching 26 points. Scoring 17 points in the first half alone, Curry went on to sink six bombs from long range in the contest.
Certainly the Knicks dug enough of a hole for themselves offensively, but Curry, and former Knick David Lee (who had a neat triple-double with 21 points, 10 boards, and 8 assists) didn't make things much easier for their opponent. The visiting team lost by a dismal score of 92-63.
New York will head to Denver next where they will take on a couple of former Knickerbockers, while the likes of Anthony, Smith, Raymond Felton, Marcus Camby, and Kenyon Martin all make a return to one of their former stomping grounds. Hopefully they'll put up more valiant of an effort than the feeble one put forth in Golden State.